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Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 1 opinion(s) today (and 7 NFP memorandum decision(s))

For publication opinions today (1):

In Matthew James Cole v. State of Indiana , a 17-page opinion, Judge Altice writes:

Following a jury trial, Matthew Cole was convicted of Level 3 felony resisting law enforcement, Level 5 felony possession of an altered handgun, Level 5 felony possession of methamphetamine, Level 5 felony possession of a narcotic drug, three counts of class A misdemeanor carrying a handgun without license, and class A infraction possession of paraphernalia. On appeal, Cole argues that the State presented insufficient evidence to support a number of his convictions. We affirm. * * *

[1. Resisting Law Enforcement] In sum, Cole created a situation in which Officer Harper’s only option to protect himself was to discharge his weapon. The fact that Officer Harper was able to get a clear shot at Dyer and not Cole does nothing to relieve Cole of responsibility for the foreseeable results of his actions. For all of these reasons, we conclude that the State presented sufficient evidence to prove that Cole’s operation of the car was a proximate cause of Dyer’s death. Accordingly, his resisting law enforcement conviction was properly elevated to a Level 3 felony.

[2. Possession of an Altered Handgun] * * * This evidence supports an inference that Cole not only possessed the Ruger, but had been carrying it on his person for some length of time. Under these circumstances, it was reasonable for the jury to infer that Cole knew that the Ruger had been altered.

[3. Possession of a Narcotic Drug] * * * Cole makes no argument that he did not possess the heroin found in the manicure kit. Accordingly, we cannot conclude that the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction for possession of a narcotic drug.

[4. Carrying a Handgun without a License] * * * The sheer ubiquity of ammunition and firearm accessories throughout the entire car was more than sufficient to support an inference that Cole had control of the car with knowledge of the guns’ presence, as well as the intent to convey or transport those weapons. Accordingly, Cole’s convictions for carrying a handgun without a license are supported by sufficient evidence.

NFP civil decisions today (2):

Carisa Coffman v. Theodore Brown, Toyota Material Handling Midwest, Inc. (mem. dec.)

Lori Enfield, Richard Enfield, Marvin Enfield, Thomas E. Wilson as Guardian for Sharon Enfield, and Steuben County Treasurer v. The Farmers & Merchants State Bank (mem. dec.)

NFP criminal decisions today (5):

Thomas E. Sparks v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

James Sturgel v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Justine Archer v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Billy Stacy Jr. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Michael A. Wilson v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on February 8, 2017 11:09 AM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions